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Melville "Verna's Vineyard" Santa Rita Hills Estate Pinot Noir 2009 (Santa Barbara County, California)
Melville "Verna's Vineyard" Santa Rita Hills Estate Pinot Noir 2009 (Santa Barbara County, California)

Retail Price: $27.00
Artisan Wine Depot Price: $18.99
You save $8.01!
Winery: Melville
Varietal: Pinot Noir
Region: Santa Rita Hills, Santa Barbara County, California
Vintage: 2009
Bottle Size: 750 ml


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CASE PRICE = $17.99 per bottle (add 12+ quantity to your basket)

Tasting Notes:

A dark ruby-red color shines from the glass. Vibrant red and orange aromas remind us of wild raspberry, ribbon candy, pluot and mandarin orange. Earth and spice hints drift towards sage, gingerbread, pink peppercorns, cherry blossom and red tea. On the palate the wine is plush and textured blanketing your entire mouth. It finishes with a refreshing and gratifying presence.

Notes from the Winemaker:

100% Melville fruit from our Los Alamos Estate, this bottling is a composed of clones 2A, 667, 777 and Merry Edwards selection. Yields were 3.6 lbs/plant (3.2 tons/acre), and were hand-harvested over a one week period. 67% of the fruit was gently de-stemmed with 33% fermented as whole-clusters in small (1.5 ton) open-top fermenters. Total skin and stem contact averaged 30 days (7 day cold soak, 2 + weeks of fermentation and 1 + week extended maceration.) From the press, the wine was transferred directly into barrel (10% new Sirugue French oak, 90% neutral), where it remained sur lie with no sulfur until April, when it was gently racked for the first time and prepared for bottling in July.

Ratings & Reviews

92 Points - Robert Parker's Wine Advocate (2008 vintage):
"The 2008 Pinot Noir Verna’s (2,400 cases) is another outstanding wine, and even less expensive. As good as the Estate, but slightly more evolved, this is a seductive style of Pinot Noir, with a dark ruby/purple color and a sweet nose of boysenberry, raspberry, blueberry, and spring flowers. Lush, heady, and delicious already, the wine is round, expansive, and ideal for drinking over the next 5-6 years.

The Melvilles are a serious viticultural family with an impeccable vineyard and top-notch wines, looked over with some consulting help from the dynamic duo of Greg Brewer and Steve Clifton. This is another impressive line-up from their cool-climate Santa Rita Hills vineyard. The barrel-aged whites, which don’t see a lot of new oak, certainly possess beautiful concentration, intensity, and potential. These wines go through full malolactic and range from a low of 14.4% alcohol for the Verna’s to 15.2% for the Donna’s. I wonder if there is a need for three separate cuvees as they are more similar than dissimilar. Greg Brewer oversees the making of Melville’s Pinots, but although he is an advocate of 100% stems, Melville uses about 33% stems in all their Pinot Noirs. They are aged completely in older neutral French barrels. This is a sensational group of Pinot Noirs that rival, and perhaps in one or two cases, eclipse what Melville accomplished in 2007. As challenging as the 2008 vintage could be, top producers who took immaculate care of their vineyards, while having the restraint to wait and wait for them to achieve perfect phenolic maturity, were able to make superb wines in this irregular vintage. P.S. As you can tell from the prices, these wines represent sensational bargains for wines at this quality level." -Robert Parker (8/2010)

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